The drama over Texas’s new congressional map will drag on after the U.S. Supreme Court on Friday blocked an interim court-drawn map. The Court on Friday ruled that an interim 2012 election map drawn by a federal court in San Antonio must give greater deference to the original map drawn by the GOP-controlled Texas state legislature. The ruling is at least a temporary victory for Republicans, in that it blocks an interim map to be used for the 2012 election that is preferred by Democrats. But it’s still not clear that the end result will be any better for Republicans. In fact, it’s not clear what the end result will be at all.
While the court-drawn map would have created three Democratic seats and one Republican seat (the state is gaining four seats due to rapid population growth over the past decade) the GOP state legislature’s plan created three Republican seats and one Democratic seat. The Fix asked several plugged-in sources what the most likely result is now, and got four different answers. Most observers said a two-two-split would make sense, but others suggested either side could still win three of the seats.
“The Democrats will gain” over the original GOP plan, said former congressman Martin Frost (D-Texas). “They just won’t gain as much as they otherwise could have. But the Supreme Court left the door open for the San Antonio court, with the right rationale, to create three Democratic seats.”